Malajika headed for stardom under Berman

Ricardo Malajika, left, pummels Nkululeko Mnisi.
Ricardo Malajika, left, pummels Nkululeko Mnisi.
Image: Nick Lourens

Ricardo Malajika must count his blessings because the newcomer in professional boxing already has a promoter with his interest at heart. Many good boxers with potential to become superstars, such as William Gare from Soweto, were not able to reach their full potential because they were not as fortunate as Malajika, who has someone looking after him.

Malajika is a 21-year-old former top amateur who turned professional last year. Trained in the south of Johannesburg by Anton Gilmore, the youngster has the backing of Africa's biggest boxing promoter Rodney Berman, whose Golden Gloves empire has produced icons.

Berman first gave Malajika the platform at Emperors Palace to establish himself as a prospect, and the boxer is undefeated after five fights. The promoter has now signed up Malajika and has successfully convinced the hierarchy of the ABU to allow Malajika to fight for its vacant regional title. The fight against Mnqobi Mkhize will take place at the Palace of Dreams in Ekurhuleni on November 30. Mkhize is no push over with eight wins from as many fights.

To spice up the night, Berman has put together a middleweight blockbuster featuring Roarke Knapp, Tristan Trutter, Boyd Allen and Brandon Thysse.

The main bout will be a clash of South African champions from different weight divisions but in a non-title 10 rounder that will be fought at catchweight between Rowan Campbell and Nicolas Radley.

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